Ever read a romance novel and think "I could write this stuff!" Well you can't. Not without years of hard work, training and tears. For those of you who have the know-how, (and I don't mean the personal romance know-how) and the education, this doesn't mean you. I'm talking to the people who poo poo the genre and say it is easy to write a romance. If it were, wouldn't everyone do it?
If a romance author let you think you could do it without a degree in creative writing, or at the very least classes and workshops on novel writing, they are probably one fine writer. Making the story flow, making you feel you are a part of the story and can write like that if you tried, is the sign of a good writer. It might look simple, but it is not.
I was so confident, I started writing in the fall and had a spring power outfit hanging in my closet for an inevitable meeting with my editor in New York.
This wasn't my first novel, but it was my first romance. I'd already written a Women's Fiction that had been rejected by some of the finest agents and editors in NYC, so you see, I wasn't totally green. Just unpublished and uneducated about the process of novel writing. Aside from a few workshops on the Hero's Journey, I had no clue. I didn't even read romance but after reading Susan Wiggs' novels, I thought I might start.
Then I read somewhere that the second book doesn't usually sell. It's purpose is solely to babysit the dust bunnies under your bed, The third book was the one that would sell. Regardless, I finished the book, sent out a queries, and got rejected by some of the finest agents and editors, not only in NYC but all over this fine country. It was unanimous. No one wanted it. No one wanted the first thirty pages, let alone the full manuscript. Although I loved the high concept, no one else did. I'd written a story about a modern day Goldilocks and the Three Bears, something that apparently would sink like a lead hard copy, and I was told repeatedly that it was a bad idea. It had either been done to death or couldn't be done, I can't remember which.
When I saw a call for Fairytale stories by Entangled Publishing, I ventured under the bed to get Goldy, and sent the pitch to several other publishers while I was at it.
How about it writers? Anyone ever heard that romance writing is easy?
Kim Hornsby is the author of Amazon Bestseller, Necessary Detour with The Wild Rose Press, originally named Goldy and the Bayers.